Fashion and clothing have always been a part of Camila Dixon’s life – her father was a textile chemist and as a young girl she accompanied him to factories and laundries where she gained a solid education in fabrics and their wash capabilities.
At 15, Camila was given her own sewing machine and quickly progressed from making doll’s clothes to designing and making her own clothes. Now, more than 20 years later, the Colombian-born, South African-raised entrpreneur is behind a range of water-proof rain jackets which scream ‘style!’
“My husband, a clothing performance designer, and I moved to New Zealand from Durban in 2016 with our son and daughter. We are very much into garment design and he offered great advice when it came to the technical side of this venture.”
Coming from South Africa where warm, dry weather is a given for much of the year, Camila says it was the many weeks of rain she experienced during her first Auckland winter that inspired her to think about the rainwear business.
“I was a bit taken back by just how much it rained that first year just when we were loving the country and dying to get out and explore. Needing coats, I tried several styles but some left us hot and sweaty, some were uncomfortable and others just didn’t keep out the wet.
“I thought I’d like to produce something that was fun, bright and did the job properly. The coats needed to work.”
Camila adds that living in such a beautiful location helped inspire her Scribbler Gear range.
“These are not just rain jackets or fashion coats, they are water-proof, performance coats. While looking good they are also technically functional, protecting the wearer from the elements – wind, rain, and cold.”
But, tired of ditch dull rain wear, her objective from the beginning was to feature the work of local and international artists on her jackets.
“The first was South African artist, Ingrid Marais, now living locally. She created the beautiful protea print on our African Protea coat; it’s this kind of detail I want to pursue.”
Scribbler Gear offers four styles: The ‘breathable’ Amazonas shell rain coat constructed to withstand wind and strong downpours of rain whilst allowing for plenty of activity without the wearer sweating excessively.
The Amazonas bonded and African Protea are both fleece-bonded coats designed to protect from wind and light rain.
The fantail performance coat – the crème de la crème of the range – is a versatile, year-round rain coat designed to cope on cold and warmers days whilst keeping the weather at bay.
Now aiming to extend the range, Camila – who is also a marketing research consultant – is presently working on coats for children and has plans for a men’s coat, too.
“I also want to add a trench style to the women’s range, keeping to the water-proof ethic and colourful nature of the brand.”
Presently talking with two more artists, Camila’s enthusiasm is boundless.
“So far, reaction to the coats has been very positive so I’m really hoping both new artists will come on board, the prototypes can be designed and that the extended range will soon be available online. Then it’s just a matter of marketing!”